This could easily get deeper then where I was going with it. I mean this does not just go for friendship, for relationship within your family, for a relationship with your spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend, this goes for your relationship with God as well.
It is quite apparent and obvious that when you lose a friendship, either a high school friendship, or even a friendship with somebody you have known forever, that something went wrong somewhere. You stopped putting in the effort to make that relationship work, and you stopped making time to fit that other person into your agenda. It is really sad how often we lose friendships and do not care, or even really notice. I cannot say that I talk to all of my friends from high school, and it is not that I intentionally just stopped wanting to be friends with them, I just lost track of time and forgot to fit them into my busy agenda. This is not something that we can let get to us too much though, I mean the best of us do it. But, I also cannot say that I do not regret it just a little. I cherish the relationships that I have so very much, and would never want to lose them, but down the road we are bound to lose relationships when time gets the best of us.
How do you grasp the concept of having a “full” on healthy relationship with someone, when you feel like you have been raised in a family where half of your loved ones have mastered “no” relationship over “full” relationship? This can get dirty, because when you feel like you do not have the full relationship from those that are closest to you, your family, you tend to want to get dependent on others that you let yourself get close to. You cling to them and expect them to give you the love, time, support, and anything that your family lacked in. This is definitely not healthy. But how can you help it? You want the extra love, closeness, and attention from your boyfriend, because your dad did not give it to you when you needed it the most. You want him to be your everything, your literal superman if you will, because you’ve felt like you have not fully received the relationship you so much desired from your father. But, he will never, EVER be that superman. God is literally the only one who can be that superman, that perfect man for you. Even if you have an amazing family, and a full, healthy relationship with each and every member of your family, they will still make mistakes, and the relationship will still be tested here and there. God is the only one that will never let you down.
The thing that sparked this whole topic in my head was when I was thinking about relationships between significant others (boyfriend, girlfriend, etc.). I was thinking about why some relationships workout, and some do not, why some relationships last a lifetime, and some barely even start before they end. I mean, this could be a whole other topic to talk about, but sometimes when relationships do not work out, I believe it could be because one, if not both of the individuals, was not ready to commit to being in a “full” on relationship with the other. It made me think about being in a full, healthy relationship, and how much work and effort that takes. So, if you are not in a full relationship, what kind of a relationship are you in? Partial relationships will never reach their full potential, and eventually become no relationship at all, which is why I believe you can either have a full relationship with another, otherwise it’s bound to be no relationship at all. Full relationships take a lot of time, a lot of effort, a lot of grace, some space, and yes, some compromise.
When you are single, you are bound to be a little selfish when it comes to making decisions for yourself and when it comes to being who you are. You do not need to worry about others standing in the way, so therefore there is no need to worry about compromising for the sake of another. You are much more independent as a single person, and only have to worry about one, not two. So, do I think the issue could arise when you do enter into a relationship with another about you becoming selfish and unwilling to compromise for the sake of another? Yes. I mean, of course it is brand new for you, you went from only needing to worry about yourself, to adding on the load of another. Now obviously there is a healthy line, you do not want to be dependent on another, and you do not want another to become dependent on you, which can be tricky in a relationship, especially if you have been in a relationship for a very long time and become very comfortable with another. But, you do have give in a little. There is a difference between good compromise and bad compromise. Bad compromise goes against your morals, beliefs, and values, where as good compromise is where you find a healthy balance between your differences, and meet somewhere in the middle. People that are unwilling to commit fully in a relationship though, will have trouble meeting in the middle. Most girls wish guys could just read their minds, and do what they want them to do already. Most girls want commitment long before guys even start thinking about commitment. This is where it gets really tough and tricky. This does not mean at all that guys are incapable of full relationships, and I am not hinting about that by any means. But, girls tend to mature earlier on than guys, and it can become tricky when girls want commitment right away, and guys like to take their time and look at the scenery along the way first.
I do think it is completely right and healthy to talk your differences out right away. If you don’t voice where you are at, the other will never, ever know. The bottom line is, if you want to have a full relationship with those that you love, you must find a common ground in the middle, and figure out where you both stand and what you both need within that relationship. This is not just with dating relationships, but also in friendships, and in your relationships with your loved ones and family members. If both of you are not good at voicing what is one your mind, you could easily dwindle into no relationship at all with that person. I learned this with my dad. He is amazing and I love him to death, but he is very passive and not so much outgoing at all, and I have come to the realization that if I do not step up and say how I feel or make a move, then nothing will change. Sometimes you just have to be the bigger person, no matter how hard it may be. It is so crucially important to voice your legitimate needs. In Matthew Kelly’s “The Seven Levels of Intimacy,” he talks about how the seventh level of intimacy is legitimate needs, and the fact that we need to voice our legitimate needs within our relationships. Everyone is completely different, and has different needs. If we do not say what is on our mind, it will never be heard. It is so important not to hold onto things, but to deal with them as they arise. Girls always want guys to be the first to initiate conversations and to be the first to approach and open up when something needs to be dealt with, but a lot of times they won’t. Want to hear something crazy? Actually, a lot of times, they do not even know that anything is wrong. That may seem crazy to you, but a lot of times, that is actually the case. We cannot play games. We cannot sit there and wait until he (or she) makes a move, we have to just “man” up and initiate it ourselves when things come up. If we don’t, nothing will probably get solved, which will probably after awhile, make things much worse. This is communication, which is probably the most important thing to a healthy, full relationship.
If you wonder why you feel alone, and feel like nobody is giving you the full attention and relationship you want, you should probably be spending more time with God. I only say this from experience. I sometimes get mixed up and jumbled in my relationships. I try to place expectations where they cannot be placed. I try to grab special, extra attention from my friends, my mom, and my boyfriend, because I feel like I do not get enough from my dad and my brother, etc. If I do this, I’m searching in the wrong place for my lack. And, if we do not realize this, it will not be long before we do, because nobody is going to fill that void, nobody can. And we cannot expect them to. If we are having trouble committing and being in full relationship with those that we love, it is probably because we are not fully seeking God and fully being in relationship with him. “Fullness” is in the Bible many times… Ephesians 3:19 says “and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 4:13 says “until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” Colossians 1:19 says “For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him…” Colossians 1:25 says “I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness…” Fullness is huge, and we need it. We hunger for it, too. Full relationship comes from God, and God alone. If we want to be able to practice having full relationships with those around us, and if we feel like we aren’t getting the “fullness” that we need in our relationships, we must first check our relationship with God.
This kind of went a different direction then I had originally thought it would, but it has taught me a lot that I needed to realize in my own life right now. God wants us to first be in “full” relationship with Him, and then He will help us fill the void in our other relationships.
Philippians 2:5 “In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus.”